I am a beekeeper (among other things) passionate about keeping the bees and my environment as natural as possible. I hold the patent and registered trademark for my invention The Hex Hive® which I designed after asking myself, “What is the most natural environment for honeybees?” The answer – round – better yet, hexagonal which is the same shape as the cells bees build in their wax comb. I also created the DVD for beginning beekeeping “Organic Beekeeping 101”. Also available on Amazon.com.
I am in support of completely clean food, gardens and beehives. I don’t use nor would I ever support the use of ANY pesticides and/or chemicals of any kind in my hives or garden.
Whenever I’m in doubt I ask myself , “What is the most natural way? What does Nature do?”
Does nature add chemicals and/or medications in the hives? NO.
Does Nature use queen excluders? NO.
Does Nature feed bees processed sugar water or high fructose corn syrup solutions? NO.
Does Nature use plastic foundation or any other type of foundation in frames? NO.
Does Nature truck bees around thousands of miles every year to pollinate one crop? NO.
Does nature treat hives for mites, beetles and diseases using unnatural products and methods? NO.
These are just a few examples of questions I posed to myself and the answers are all the same and simple. “NO”. If nature doesn’t do it, then neither do it.
On the other hand, does nature start all colonies through swarms? YES.
Does nature allow the bees to decide and build their own cell sizes in their comb? YES.
Does nature supply wooden cavities for honeybees to live in? YES.
So these are some of the things I do and the methods I practice and teach.
Keeping and caring for bees is not hard nor does it need to take a lot of time and effort. My philosophy is hands off as much as possible. My main job as beekeeper is “Space Management”. I have to make sure the colonies have enough room to grow and add supers when the time is right and reduce supers when needed. Pretty simple….
Beekeeping is a fascinating activity the whole family can participate in and enjoy. I highly recommend checking it out for anyone interested.
A very important question to ask yourself first and foremost is, “WHY are YOU wanting to keep bees?” For pollination purposes, honey production, status, etc. or just simply to help the bees? This will determine how you set up and manage your hives.
I always tell anyone interested in pursuing beekeeping to learn as much as you can (and there’s a lot out there!), take what resonates and throw the rest away because if you ask 10 beekeepers a question you’ll get 12 different answers.
So be sure you’re clear that you want to raise bees and how you want to raise your bees and remember to JUST HAVE FUN with it!